The Lincoln Continental is getting suicide doors.
Why? Because the Continental is a boring luxury car that looks like every other luxury sedan and Lincoln hopes that a return to suicide doors will help their very boring sedan stand out.
According to Automotive News, speaking to sources from the 2018 National Auto Dealers Association meeting, Lincoln unveiled pictures of a new Continental that had doors that swung from the back instead of the front, just like Continentals found in the 1960s.
The stories luxury car that was roughly the size of a bus used to actually have suicide doors way back in the day. It was seen as a trendy design element that was possible as parking lots were meant to accommodate 20-foot long luxury sedans. Nowadays it seems almost quaint to think of a time when you could parallel park a four-door car you could fill with water and swim in.
But Lincoln has to do something, so rehashing old ideas might be the way to go. After Ford resurrected the Continental name in 2016 to be Lincoln’s flagship car sales have not been as strong as Ford would have liked. The first full year in dealer rooms saw only 12,000 deliveries on the Continental, while the competing Mercedes E-Class sold over 60,000.
Ford must have looked at the current Continental, realized it looks basically like the more boring offspring of an E-Class and a Bentley and decided to switch things up. What’s a bigger switch than what side the door hinges are on?
Lincoln told dealers at the meeting that the suicide-door version of the Continental will go on sale sometime soon, probably in the next year. This counters previous reports that Ford was considering ditching the Continental due to poor sales.
But in an era where sedan sales of all types are falling through the floor while SUV and crossover sales are climbing through the roof, are suicide doors really the answer? Maybe they should also stretch the wheelbase out to be the same length as the ‘60s-era Continental too?
The future is retro, it seems.